Complications of a large milk supply

What are some of the problems caused by a large milk supply?

Mothers with a large milk supply have a higher risk of breast pain, milk pimples, plugged ducts, mastitis, and abscess formation. The risk diminishes as the milk supply settles down in the months after delivery. Mothers who have had major difficulties breastfeeding need to ensure that there is no other cause of their difficulties. They may want to take preventive measures and decrease their milk supply.

A) Problems that can be caused by a large milk supply

In addition to tender breasts, mothers with a large milk supply are at increased risk of:

Breastfeeding mothers may develop such problems from time to time, but mothers with a large milk supply are at greater risk of having frustrating recurrences. Recurrent mastitis, in particular, can be exhausting.

The risk of these problems diminishes as a mother’s milk supply settles down in the months after delivery and the breasts produce only as much milk as the baby needs. 

If you have had major breastfeeding difficulties, your milk supply may be reduced. If not, you may want to take preventive measures and decrease your milk supply.  

B) Rule out other causes of your problems

If you are having problems, ensure there are no other causes. Recurrent mastitis, for example, can also be caused by nipple damage or breast cancer.

If you are expressing in addition to breastfeeding, ensure you are not expressing too much milkIf you are, you will need to express less.

References

Cullinane M, Amir LH, Donath SM, et al. Determinants of mastitis in women in the CASTLE study: a cohort study. BMC Fam Pract. 2015 Dec 16;16:181